Joanne Froggatt set to return to Downton Abbey as third film is confirmed

Joanne Froggatt pictured above (Getty Images)
Joanne Froggatt pictured above (Getty Images)

Joanne Froggatt is set to reprise her role in Downton Abbey as production begins on the period drama's third film.

The 43-year-old actress played Anna Bates, Lady Crawley's maid, in the series from 2010 until it finished in 2015, and continued her role in the first two films.

News of the third installment was unintentionally revealed by actress Imelda Staunton, who announced that there would indeed be a “third and final” film.

The showrunners later confirmed the speculation, announcing that there would indeed be a 'third film in the beloved Downton Abbey franchise.'

However, despite producers' efforts to reunite the cast, some stars will be unable to return.

Froggatt pictured with co-star Brendan Coyle (ITV)
Froggatt pictured with co-star Brendan Coyle (ITV)

A source told The Sun: “This will be welcome news for fans of the drama, because Anna was a particular favourite but none of the cast members were guaranteed to return.

“Although the producers have tried to reunite most of the Downton stars, not all of them have been able to commit, even if they did appear in the first two films.”

It is reported that Staunton, who portrayed Lady Maud Bagshaw, will not be returning due to other work commitments, as she stars in Hello Dolly! at the Palladium theatre in London.

The news comes a month after Michelle Dockery said being back for the third Downton Abbey movie is “emotional” as the production begins.

The latest edition of the hit period drama will see the return of Dominic West and Oscar nominee Paul Giamatti as well as Dockery, playing the captivating and clever Lady Mary Talbot.

The third film is written by Downton Abbey creator and Oscar winner Lord Julian Fellowes and directed by Simon Curtis, who also helmed the last instalment 2022’s Downton Abbey: A New Era and 2011’s My Week With Marilyn.

In a YouTube video, Dockery said: “It feels amazing and emotional. It’s wonderful to be back together again.

“You come back together and it’s like no time has passed at all. We’re so happy to announce that we’re in production for the third Downton Abbey movie. We can’t wait to see you.”

The Holdovers star Giamatti is reprising his role as Crawley matriarch Cora’s (Elizabeth McGovern) brother Harold Levinson, who appeared in a Downton Abbey Christmas special on ITV.

While The Crown star West will play actor Guy Dexter following his appearance in Downton Abbey: A New Era as the love interest of the servant Thomas Barrow (Robert James-Collier).